Chump Meetup


, , ,


little girls cry

One of the lingering effects of my divorce is social isolation. My married friends all faded away after Voldemort moved out, I don’t have outside employment, and we moved out of the neighborhood we’d lived in for 13 years. I signed up for to expand my horizons, but found that quite a few of the meetups were either for young moms or poorly disguised attempts to sell stuff.

I’ve made a lot of acquaintances through the college classes I’ve taken, but they’re “in the moment” kinds of relationships.

I finally signed up for the forums and found a SoCal group. I was excited and a little hesitant to go to the planned lunch meeting this weekend, but I’m so glad I did. There were eight of us on the outdoor patio of a restaurant in Old Town (exactly what it sounds like, a part of San Diego devoted to making money from the city’s history, which is mainly Wild West cowboys and Spanish missionaries). Seven women and one man, all chumped by our cheating spouses. We ate, drank, and talked for more than five hours. It was awesome, fun, and educational.

First, I learned that having a cheater spouse really, really isn’t the chump’s fault. Every single one of us at that table was smart, funny, kind, and attractive. No one drove their poor, misunderstood spouse to adultery. I knew this intellectually, but seeing other people in the same boat, I finally accepted this truth into my bones.

I also learned that in so many ways, cheaters follow a playbook. There are habits and characteristics they pretty much all have in common. The lies they tell are similar, the excuses follow predictable lines, they really don’t have much imagination.

The imagination seems to come in with their selection of affair partners. One absolutely beautiful woman’s ex-husband had his last affair with a granny porn star. (I was captivated by this story. Granny porn is a thing? Yep. As best we can figure it’s porn starring women over 40. Uh-huh. In the porn industry over 40 = granny.) Best part? The stunningly pretty woman who spent 15 years with this cheater was laughing the whole time she told her story.

The pain was finite.

Sharing our divorce experiences was eye-opening. I now understand why my lawyer said I got the best divorce settlement she’s ever seen. I thought she was full of crap, but I don’t have to share custody with a man who shtupped our kids’ babysitter. I didn’t have to move out of the family home so a string of random women could move in. I really am very lucky in many ways, but especially custody. It’s been super easy to go no contact with Voldemort since he pretty much just disappeared. I’ve embraced my gratitude about that. It sucked for a long time, but everything is so much better now.

It was a gift to spend time with people who get it. They understand not wanting to date for now or maybe at all. There’s no surprise at the insistence to never re-marry. Those who are dating are doing so with eyes wide open and sense of humor intact.

I hope to see some of the local chumps again in smaller settings and become better friends. It was a relief to be able to let the scars and warts show — and laugh about it all.

Getting to it


, ,


I got a phone call yesterday afternoon from my lawyer.

Her: Congratulations! As of July 2nd, you were legally, officially divorced.

Me: It took them a week to tell me?

Her: It took them nine months to do it, be grateful it only took them a week to let you know.

So the court finally got to it. Sheesh. And, of course, the fun (and legal bills) still aren’t over. There’s the QDRO, the life insurance, and the wage assignment. But at least I’m no longer legally bound to He-Who-Shall-Not-Be-Named.


The Long and Winding Road to Final Judgement


, , , ,


Recap of my divorce so far: Voldemort sent me an email announcing his imminent departure in March 2012 and moved out the next day. I was served with divorce papers in August 2013; our settlement meeting was in December 2013. The family home closed escrow in October 2014 and the signed final Marital Settlement Agreement was filed with the judge in November 2014.

In April 2015 our file was reportedly at the top of the judge’s pile.

In July 2015 the Court’s response to an inquiry as to status of the final decree was, “We’ll get to it when we get to it.”

We passed ridiculous months ago.  Now we’re in a previously undiscovered ring of Hell.

Sort, Purge, Repeat


, , , ,


(An artistic representation of me and my garage…if my garage was a bit more organized)


The week after Voldemort moved out in Spring 2012, I got busy packing all of his belongings. My purpose was two-fold: I wanted to eradicate his presence in our home because it was pissing me off and bumming out the kids, and I’d changed the locks so I needed to be able to point him to the garage should he show up for his stuff (which never happened).

After I was served with divorce papers in Summer 2013, I emailed Voldemort multiple times to pick up his 50+ boxes of stuff (he finally did and has been bitching about the way I packed ever since). Then I started purging and packing to leave the marital home. We were moving from a 2,700 square foot single-family house to an 1,100 square foot townhome, so there was a lot of purging to be done. It took me more than 2 months with multiple Salvation Army truck pick-ups, a huge garage sale, more trips to Goodwill to drop off bags and bags of items, and one shamefully large truckload to the dump to get things down to a manageable level for the new place.

I did a pretty good job, but my garage remained a pit of despair. I’ve held on to multiple boxes of sentimental items, including our wedding china, but that’s not really the issue. No, the issue is that despite my best intentions and efforts to purge and let go, I still clung to quilts, comforters, blankets, linens, clothes, and all manner of household items I simply don’t use. A couple of weeks ago, I went into the garage with the goal of sorting through one bag/box/container a day. Good grief, the stuff I’ve hung on to. It’s appalling.

There’s a quilt that hasn’t been used, at all, for at least 7 years. What was I thinking to move that? There were three handbags stashed slyly out of sight, because purses are my drug of choice. There was a box of Christmas wrapping supplies sternly marked “Use by December 2013 or recycle!” None of them have been used in almost two years — I forgot I even had them.

I’ve realized that a big part of the garage problem I have is that I fear lack. I fear letting go of something in case I (or a family member) need it in the future and are unable to buy a new whatever-it-is. And in the present that means I’m aggravated by the state of my garage; can’t find the just-in-case-items if I do need them; and have completely forgotten what I was storing.

Gah, it never ends.

I don’t have a desperate need for my garage to be pristine or used for any purpose beyond storage right now, but I do think getting it more organized and efficient is important. My giant box of divorce-related paperwork is a mess. If I have to dig something up from that abyss, it would take an entire weekend. There are a number of things that I will probably keep for the rest of my life and I’ve made my peace with most of it. At some point I may offer up the china to my kids and extended family. If none of them want it, I’m almost okay with donating it. Every-frickin’-thing else needs to have a purpose in my life or move on to someone else who can use it.

Living in fear of not having enough spatulas is absurd.

I’m Disinclined to Acquiesce to Your Request


, ,


It’s been over a year since my last contact with my almost former mother-in-law, via a bizarre message she left on my answering machine about Christmas (in March). The last time I actually spoke to her was December 2012 and the last time I saw her was December 2011.

She hasn’t contacted or acknowledged any of the kids since 2012.

So of course she randomly emailed me this weekend with “The past is the past, let’s be friends.”

Knowing how she treated me when we were “family” I can only surmise that she would slit my throat and dump my body in the desert if we were “friends.”

No, thanks. I have no interest in playing the dead body on an episode of “Dateline.”

Alright, alright, alright


, , ,


Kids #1 and #3 and I all made it through the Spring semester, GPAs intact. #3 made the honor rolls again and got a Standard of Excellence Award for Biology. Kid #1 is on track to graduate college (with me!) this time next year.

I survived Intermediate Algebra with a B. Even better, my last math requirement is (social science) Statistics and then I can go back to simply practicing creative mathematics when balancing my checkbook.

It’s amazing how much more time I have when I don’t waste it graphing friggin’ quadratic equations.

Shake It Off Video Montage


Fun video by a local therapist (who’s as lovely in person as she seems on her blog) featuring some friends of mine. Remember: “For any one person who is against you, there are more people who will stand for you.”

Originally posted on Gender Blog by Darlene Tando, LCSW:

I had a lot of fun creating a music video montage to Taylor Swift’s “Shake It Off” song. My goal of this video is to raise awareness and acceptance of transgender youth and adults. Being transgender is NOT a mental illness, it is just a variation of the human condition. We need more understanding and more allies!! Those who are transgender should not live in shame or in fear of coming out. And for those who face adversity every day, here is my reminder to try your best to “shake it off”. For any one person who is against you, there are more people who will stand for you.

A sincere thanks to everyone who contributed videos for this project, and to my sister Emily who sang the modified lyrics.

Enjoy the video below, and feel free to share! :)

View original

Spring Break, At Least There’s No Algebra


, , , ,



Oy, I’m tired of trying to get divorced. The last time I heard from my attorney (before today) was in late January. She’d received a call from Mr. Men’s Rights asking about releasing the house proceeds prior to the finalization of the divorce.

Yes, the house closed escrow in October and the proceeds were placed into an attorney’s trust (with my lawyer because I’m the one who kept the escrow officer and my attorney up to date) pending final dissolution of the marriage. So there’s a huge amount of money just sitting there and Voldemort, through his lawyer, wants it.

I worked with my attorney on conditions for the stipulation to release the money early; basically taking care of all the agreed upon expenses before cutting checks to each of us. She sent the paperwork over to opposing counsel and was told they were cool with it. Then she spent a couple of days following up, prodding his lawyer’s office to get it together so the funds could be released.

And I received a $600 bill for legal services. I emailed her immediately and told her to knock that s**t off. How absurd for Voldemort to make this request and have it cost me $600. No.

No more follow-ups. No more reminders. He wants it, he can deal with his attorney to get it.

Which means that nothing happened for two months.

Until today. My attorney called to let me know Mr. Men’s Rights wanted to know when the money would be released. He claims he signed the stipulation weeks ago, blah blah blah. Honestly, who cares when he signed it? Voldemort has to sign and produce some proof that he’s complied with the stipulation.

But it gets weirder, or crazier?, or something. Voldemort hasn’t paid his lawyer bill in months. He owes Mr. Men’s Rights some significant amount of money and Mr. Men’s Rights is clearly gunning for a way to get it. Now that he’s motivated, perhaps there will be some forward movement.

My attorney also called the judge and learned that our file is “almost to the top” of the judge’s stack. No clue if that means the decree will be finalized this week or this month or even this year. Apparently, the divorce backlog is at least six months in San Diego. Plan accordingly.

This seedy underbelly of the judicial system is frightening. I hope there’s a way to fast-track paperwork for domestic violence survivors because I can’t even imagine that nightmare.

I’ve got a few days with no Algebra homework and it’s awesome. Then just seven more weeks and I’ll be done with Algebra…and on to Statistics.

It could be worse. I could still be married to and living with He Who Shall Not Be Named. I’ll take Algebra every day of the week!

My Divorce is Like the Energizer Bunny


, ,


It just keeps going and going…

My husband abruptly moved out on March 30, 2012, apparently to shack up with his mistress. As of today, the divorce is still not final. We didn’t have a ton of money to begin with and there’s a whole lot less now that we’ve been paying lawyers for months and months. California courts presume 50/50 joint custody, but the one remaining minor child channeled Nancy Reagan and just said no to that nonsense.

I really have no idea if this divorce will ever end. I need some more snark/pithy internet wisdom to get through it.


5qIXG4LuwahNj7d Deal1-175x175 dear-karma tell the truth wedding-ring-cheater-sex-divorce-ecards-someecards Y8GX23t5Rmupfxn stupid-decisions 5evktRLYCZHbKeB 635285572968172017kick ass brNQOkCL19Y9HsL fP8ZotVxBXzlai6


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 168 other followers